In 1914 Congress established the Extension Service in order to provide a means for disseminating and implementing research-based information from land-grant universities. The University of Florida, a land-grant university, is part of this system of information outreach to the people of Florida. The transfer of knowledge is facilitated by faculty that are located in each of Florida’s 67 counties and education centers. The partnership between counties and the university is the heart of the Cooperative Extension Service mission and enables the university to extend its knowledge base to each community.
The mission of extending and implementing research-based information to the people of Florida has not changed over time, however the information and delivery methods have enormously improved. The driving force for these information delivery methods are the needs of citizens in each county. County extension faculty develop educational programs based on priority issues determined by their urban and commercial customers or citizens. These priority issues form the basis for major educational programs that are conducted statewide.
Information is delivered by satellite courses, computer software, seminars, video presentations, world wide web, or by the traditional lecture and print medium. Extension provides non biased research based information from the University to the county residents, who can use the educational information to make informed decisions that will enhance the quality of their lives, businesses, homes and communities.